Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) in England is working with Vivacity Labs to install sensors that can anonymously identify different types of road users at selected intersections. The Smart Junctions Manchester project – winner of the Innovative Use of Technology award at the 2020 ITS (UK) Awards – is part of TfGM’s investment in its cycling and walking infrastructure program.
The sensors will allow TfGM to better understand how current travel schemes – such as segregated cycling and walking routes and priority areas – are being used, along with aiding in the planning and implementation of future schemes.
“Giving as many people as possible access to convenient, safe and enjoyable forms of active travel will help us to build on the increases in walking and cycling we have seen during the pandemic,” said TfGM program director for cycling and walking, Richard Nickson. “We’ve already made great progress this year in delivering the UK’s largest cycling and walking network and have many more schemes in the pipeline as we look to give people a genuine alternative to the car, reduce congestion and help improve air quality. By enhancing our monitoring capabilities, we can more effectively measure the success of this substantial investment and better understand the use of active travel modes across the region to inform our long-term strategy and delivery.”
Plans are in place to install 100 of the AI-powered sensors at selected intersections. Working with the “smart Junctions” program that is already in place, the sensors will collect such data as interactions between pedestrians, cyclists and cars; numbers of users; pathways; and speeds, to create a network for travel data insight across the city.
“Greater Manchester is investing heavily into its cycling and walking network, and we’re delighted to be progressing our relationship with Transport for Greater Manchester to provide data insights into cycling and walking on a new scale,” said Mark Nicholson, co-founder and CEO, Vivacity Labs. The datasets will enable TfGM to understand how active travel users are interacting with schemes and evaluate their effectiveness in facilitating walking and cycling. As we adapt to life without restrictions, offering smart, safe and sustainable ways to travel is becoming all the more important, and we look forward to continuing our partnership in achieving this.”